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Sugar Baron Single Estate Craft R(h)um, is one of only a handful of distilleries in South Africa producing Rum in the Agricole style.

Nestled in the picturesque Mkhuzane Valley of South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal Midlands rests Seafield Farm. Our unique climate and fertile soils create a rich terroir producing premier quality sugarcane, used exclusively in Sugar Baron Plantation Origin Rum.

We follow the traditional Agricole style for producing our handcrafted rum. The essence of freshly harvested, hand-cut sugarcane is extracted, fermented, distilled and bottled on site at our distillery to create only the finest product. Roger O’Neill, dedicated father and pioneer, established the plantations in 1994, creating the heart of our Plantation Origin Rum. Every batch of Sugar Baron rum is produced with the utmost attention to detail, celebrating and honouring his innovative spirit.

This is all produced using the lady of the manor, The Baroness. She stands tall, adorned in red copper and shimmering stainless steel. She is a proud matriarch, a 200 litre, hybrid still with the most consistent disposition and output.

The result is a dramatic overture, a symphony that sings of the raw product’s freshness and the sweet, floral undertones. The melody builds to a crescendo, a distinctive funk that is our rhythm and is our rum. This is the footnote of a good Rhum Agricole and we are passionate about maintaining this in every batch, which is why we are personally involved in every beat of the song… from field to glass.


How Rhum Agricole Is Made

What makes our products unique is the fact that we make our rum from the best quality sugarcane, grown and harvested on our farm. Freshly harvested, unburnt sugarcane is delivered to our distillery, crushed and fermented. The utmost care is taken to capture only the very best parts of the distillation to make our rum!


For an Agricole rum, the use of single varietal, mature, clean, fresh, unburnt sugarcane grown in fertile soil is essential.


You cannot distil a good rum from a bad ferment. The quality of fermentation is key. Usually between 27 – 33ºC and at a starting pH of between 5.0 and 5.5 for approximately a week.


Once the ferment is ready, we transfer it to an 800L stainless steel strip still for the initial distillation. The distillate is then transferred to our 200L copper and stainless steel hybrid pot/column still for the second distillation. Here we do our cuts, separating heads, hearts and tails, and fine-tune our product organoleptically by tasting, touching and smelling the distillate constantly as we go.


Ageing is a matter of chemistry that makes the spirit evolve; flavours it, softens it, colours it, until it is almost totally transformed. The type of oak used, its various treatments and its age are all criteria that interact with the spirit over time. The distillate produced at Sugar Baron is either aged in glass demijohns for our Single Estate white rum, or transferred to 200 and 300L French and American oak barrels for our barrel-aged rum selections.


Blending is the final process available to the distiller to alter a rum’s character. Our rums are blends of light and dark rums of different ages using both pot and column distillation techniques. We carefully blend our rums to reflect an elegant style and profile, with well-integrated oak, and complex yet harmonious flavours. The end result is a warm and sublimely smooth finish.


Pour yourself a glass of your favourite Sugar Baron rum, or make a delicious cocktail like a Daiquiri or Mojito. Now it’s time to sit back, relax, and enjoy!

Our Lingo

Our Lingo

The simple difference between Rum and Rhum Agricole is that Rum is always made from molasses (an industrial byproduct of sugar production), while Rhum Agricole is made directly from freshly pressed sugarcane juice. Upon harvest, the sugarcane is immediately pressed to extract the free-run juice, which ferments with a combination of added commercial yeast specifically formulated for sugarcane, and wild organic yeast from the outside sheath of the sugarcane stalks, producing the Vin de Canne or sugarcane wine. The careful production process of Rhum Agricole results in a pure spirit, encompassing the natural aromas and earthy, vegetal and floral character of the sugarcane.
Rhum Agricole is rum that is made from freshly pressed sugar cane juice, in contrast to most rum, which is distilled from fermented molasses. The cane is cut and crushed and the juice is transferred directly into fermenters, after which it heads to the stills.
The term Single Estate is becoming used more widely in the trade. The term is generally regarded as synonymous with 'Farm to Bottle', or 'Field to Glass', meaning that the raw material is grown on the estate where it is fermented, distilled, aged and bottled.
Plantation (meaning farm) - in recognition of the beautiful farm on which Brad spent his teenage years and lives on today. Our artisanal range of rums originate from the great terroirs of the picturesque and fertile Mkhuzane Valley of South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal Midlands.
A term to describe how we do everything on site at Seafield Farm; from preparing the soil and planting the sugarcane, to bottling our rums, hence 'field to glass'. We believe that being in control of every step in the process is of utmost importance in ensuring we know exactly what goes into our products.
A method of separating mixtures based on differences in their volatilities in a boiling liquid mixture. The components in a mixture are vaporised by the application of heat and then immediately cooled by the action of cold water in a condenser.
Taking the raw product (cane juice) and adding either yeast or letting naturally occurring yeasts react and ferment the juice into alcohol.
Transferring the rum into barrels to rest. There are two kinds of ageing – static and dynamic. Static – as it suggests means the rum is just left to sit and age. Dynamic, or Solera ageing, means that older rum is added to a newer rum, and left to sit. The new rum absorbs the age of the older rum. Then it is added to older rum again, and the process repeats itself.
A hybrid still is a combination of a pot and a column still, which are often linked together with piping and diverter valves. Turning on or off certain valves allows different process paths, with each containing its own distillation properties. Hybrid stills can be used to produce a variety of spirits. The versatility of hybrid stills has made them popular amongst the craft distilling community.
Copper is generally accepted to produce the best spirits due to the interaction between the copper and acidic components in the fermented wash. It also assists with the removal of sulphur compounds.